November 19, 2009

Plumpkin Cheesecake

No, the "Plumpkin" is not a mistake. This is not health food. It will make you plump. I promise.

So, be sensible. Eat a small slice and invite friends over so you can hoist the unhealthy caloric intake upon them. That's what I do.

I'm a nice person.

When I got my subscription to Food Network Magazine, the first issue arrived in January 2009 containing a recipe for Knock-off Cheesecake Factory Pumpkin Cheesecake. Well, I had to try it, right? When you can make a whole cheesecake for the price of a slice at the Factory, it's worth it.
So I busted out my KitchenAid and got down to business.

I've made this Pumpkin Cheesecake four (five?) times now and it is deeee-licious. I don't know if it actually tastes like anything you'd get from the Cheesecake Factory since I've never had their pumpkin cheesecake, but it tastes darn good. Yes, yes it does.
I can never get the crust just right, the taste is fine, but it's just too moist. Maybe less butter next time?

(Is it OK that I pretend my grainy pictures have vintage charm? I'm shopping for a new camera...and trying to find the light/be the light/own the light.)

Four bars of cream cheese, two-and-a-half cups of sugar, six eggs, a can of pumpkin, assorted spices and an hour-and-forty-five minutes later-VOILA!
Pumpkin Cheesecake.

This recipe actually makes a bit much for my 9" springform pan, so it would probably be fine to proportionally take it down so that it only used three bars of cream cheese, but I'm lazy and I just put the spare batter in foil cupcake liners and pack them for lunch.

Pumpkin Cheesecake

Preheat oven to 325.

For the crust:
*12 Tbsp butter, melted
*2 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (wouldn't ginger snaps be delightful?)
*1/4 cup sugar
*pinch of salt
Combine and press into 10" springform pan. Bake 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Allow to cool.

For the filling:
*2 lbs cream cheese (4-8oz bars)
*2 1/2 cups sugar
*1/4 cup sour cream
*1-15oz can pumpkin
*6 eggs, lightly beaten
*1 Tbsp vanilla extract
*2 1/2 tsp cinnamon
*1 tsp ground ginger
*1/4 tsp ground cloves
*pinch of salt
Mix cream cheese until smooth. Add the sugar and beat until light (I think it gets so pretty and shiny and ribbony.) Beat in the sour cream and then add the pumpkin, eggs, vanilla and spices. Pour into the cooled crust.

If you don't use a water bath for your cheesecake, you should. So stick your tea kettle on and heat up some water. I used to have a roasting pan, but I left it behind in the move--Mom you can use it!--so I found MG's large glass pan that my foil wrapped springform pan fit inside. Put the pan with the springform pan on the oven rack first and THEN add the hot water-just an inch or so. Close the oven, set your timer for an hour and forty-five minutes and walk away. I always check on it around the hour mark to make sure there's still some water left moisturizing my cheesecake. The steam is essential to an un-cracked top. At an hour and forty-five minutes I check my cheesecake for jiggle. It's usually too jiggly so it takes about two hours total.

It's really much better after a day or two. So make it up a couple of days in advance and let it sit in your refrigerator. I think it would be amazing served with a caramel sauce and some sweetened, cinnamon whipped cream, but that's just me. I usually don't serve it with anything and it gets eaten. Trust me, it gets eaten.



  1. Sounds yummy. I have a potluck coming up, perhaps I will make this. :) Thanks for all the good recipes Amy!

  2. Did you seriously use the phrase "less butter next time."?


    I don't think I know you anymore.

  3. This is making an appearance in Theory class soon. It simply must. And yes, I bake for my theory students. They are SO spoiled.